June 10, 2008

Another Side Of Jakob Dylan

Jakob Dylan has garnered comparisons to his father since the Wallflowers released their debut album in 1992. Belonging to a group, though, afforded him some measure of autonomy and, in a certain sense, anonymity. With his first solo effort, Seeing Things, he now lays his individual identity as a musician out on the line. It’s a bold move, considering that this album will sit alongside the likes of Blonde On Blonde and Blood On the Tracks in music bins across the land, all filed under one surname: Dylan.

With stark, windswept songs and Rick Rubin’s unvarnished production, Jakob Dylan doesn’t disappoint. His solemn singing voice is front and center, lending a sense of immediacy to the lyrics. Minimalist bass and guitar — acoustic, for the most part — serve as a lattice beneath the vocal, creating an expansive, ominous tone. It’s a compelling album overall and there’s something to be said for a man who steps outside his comfort zone to test the scope of his potential. Jakob Dylan likely hasn’t reached the limits of his creativity with this work, but his journey thus far sounds worthwhile.